Your roles and responsibilities at work

What we’ve covered so far

You’re going to give yourself the gift of review time. You’ve planned it, you’ve foreshadowed it, and you’ve mulled it over. You’ve thought about your roles and responsibilities and you’ve considered the role of ‘Me-Caretaker‘. I said you might need a separate list of roles and responsibilities for work. If that’s you, then here’s what I suggest.

If you want to catch up on all of the previous posts in this series, click here.

A notebook and meticulously planned tea breaks

You’re aim here is to create a workable list of your roles and responsibilities at work, and keep it handy so you can come back to it.

Spend a week carrying a notebook around with you. Use it to monitor what you do during the working day. Every so often – and you can decide what kind of time period you want to measure – note down (briefly) what you are doing in your notebook. Pay particular attention to distractions and interruptions.

If you think you’re going to forget to do this, use a kitchen timer, or an alert on your phone, and write down whatever you’re doing when it goes off, or meticulously plan five-minute tea, chat or water breaks and write what you were doing in your notebook before your break starts.

Take a look at the information you’ve captured

After your week is over, go over your notes, and work out what your roles and responsibilities are at work based on what you did during the week. Don’t evaluate, simply tot up what you did. Any roles and responsibilities not working for you? Make a separate list of common distractions and interruptions. Work out if there’s anything you can do about them.

If you are employed, do this:

Compare what your job description states are your roles and responsibilities to what you actually did during your week. Alternatively, you can apply this to a specific project you’re involved in, your stated role in the project and what you’re actually doing with your time. This can be an enlightening experience. Share it with your boss if you think it will help start up a conversation.

If you are self-employed, do this:

Write down, in a couple of sentences, what you’re aiming to do with your time and why, and break that down into the different jobs involved. Then compare what you’ve written to what you actually did with your time.

The results of the exercise

Once you’ve completed this exercise, you should have a pretty good idea of your roles and responsibilities at work. You may have identified some training needs, or an opportunity you didn’t see before, or a constant interruption you could do something about. You may have questions for your boss or even fuel to help you negotiate a pay rise, or at least a separate office. You may have realised that you’re focusing your efforts in the wrong place, or that a different strategy might work better for you.

 


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Top Ten Tips for Increasing Your Productivity

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